As I awoke this morning, I had two words stuck in my head, opinions and judgment. I immediately decided this was a great topic to write about for my blog. Let me preference this by saying if you are not interested in becoming better or healthier in your journey, this probably won’t resonate with you.
When we think about opinions there are not completely factual truths about a matter and often we want to believe opinions should be discounted when they relate to the negative aspect of our character. However, I believe that growth is inevitable when we are open to others opinions. While we like to believe, we know what’s best, there are simply moments when a person can share something about you that is worth embracing and processing. If we are closed off and easily offended, we find ourselves being more defensive than receptive. We like to say things like, “they don’t know me,” but again there can be value in what one has said even when it’s not comfortable. Yes, opinions are also the perception of another person’s views, but does that mean it’s not accurate. Perception can be a reality even though we would like to fight that concept. Give people the liberty to speak their opinion and take the time to honestly assess its value.
I find judgment to be a slippery slope because initially, some will say “you’re not supposed to judge people.” They will even go as far as saying “the Bible says….” The unfortunate part of this is that people misquote what the Bible says and stop at that one passage of “judge not.” However, to continue that concept and keep it in context, the subject of judgment goes on for the next couple of passages and tells us to “judge by the same measure in which we would want to be judged.” I’m paraphrasing but I wanted you to get the meaning. And in the conclusion of that concept, it instructs us to use righteous judgment. If we wanted to take the Biblical approach, righteous judgment is that which is right and true. If we were to go outside of that, we would still be able to qualify social judgment as long as it is based on truth, it would still be righteous judgment. So, that dispels the notion that people cannot judge, but it qualifies how they can judge. There are times when people pass judgment on us and we resist, deflect and project because we do not want to accept the truth that has been spoken. We run to the statement “you’re not supposed to judge or we start telling someone you can’t tell me anything, look at yourself….” Invariably these are approaches we use to denounce something that has been said which has validity.
Here’s what I know to be true when I am willing and open to growing, I can listen without becoming defensive and trying to attack the person who is talking to me. If my pride is an issue, I am unable to hear anything that has been spoken and attempt to discount what has been said. Pride and lack of humility can keep us from growing and becoming better as we have convinced ourselves we are already living our best version. Even if you are living what you believe is your best version, there will always be room to become even better. Accepting the truth that is negative about you makes you a stronger person as you are humble enough to accept and execute the information.
Criticism can be constructive and we must learn the difference between criticism and constructive criticism so we don’t misinterpret the intentions of others. Become strong enough to say “if it’s true, I am willing to improve.” Stop getting caught up in fighting for the position to be right instead of fighting for the right to become better.